While renting a car during your travels can have its perks, like saving the wear and tear on your own vehicle, it can also have its pitfalls. One of the biggest cons of renting a car is that you’re now driving a car that you’re not particularly familiar with.
In some situations, this may not be a big deal. But if you’re going to be driving in a place that you haven’t been before or in conditions that could be dangerous, like, during winter driving, you might be much more concerned about taking out a rental. So to help you stay safe and avoid any mishaps, here are three tips for renting a car that you’ll be driving in the snow
Pick The Right Car To Rent
The first thing you should do to help ensure that you’re going to be driving around in a safe car is to make sure the vehicle you pick will do well in the snow. While you might think that this means you should automatically get a four-wheel drive vehicle, this isn’t actually the case. According to Eric Jordan, a contributor to Conde Nast Traveler, a car with all-wheel drive or even just front-wheel drive can usually do pretty well in the snow.
What’s most important, however, is that you ensure you’re renting a car with anti-lock brakes. ABS will help keep your wheels from locking up if you have to brake in the snow, which is the type of situation that causes many car accidents in the winter.
Check Out The Car Before You Leave The Lot
Once you get to the car rental lot and are given the exact car that you’ll be taking out, it’s now time for you to do a full check on the vehicle. While you’d normally check for things like dents or dings and any other obvious problems, winter driving should have you looking a little more closely at the vehicle.
According to Ned Levi, a contributor to Travelers United, you should be looking at things like tire tread and inflation as well as if there’s a spare tire and a usable jack in the vehicle. If any of these things look questionable to you, make sure you talk to the rental agency about it before you take the vehicle into your possession.
Know The Rules About Chains
For those traveling to places with heavy snow, you might think that chains would be a no-brainer for you. However, according to AutoSlash.com, many car rental agencies won’t allow you to use chains as they can easily cause damage to the vehicle. So if you’re thinking you’ll be needing snow chains during your trip, make sure you speak to the rental agency before putting them on your car, as this could be a violation of your rental agreement.
If you’ll be renting a car in a snowy area, consider using the tips mentioned above to help you prepare for this situation.